WuXi STA and Ark Biosciences sign agreement to improve drug development


The partnership is aimed at using the CDMO to improve the drug development process at the biotech company

STA Pharmaceutical, a subsidiary of WuXi AppTec, and Ark Biosciences have agreed a strategic partnership for CMC development and manufacturing. The collaboration aims to optimise manufacturing processes and other aspects to drug development.

Ark is a biotech company focused on innovative drug discovery and development, especially in the area of viral infection and respiratory disease. Under the terms of the collaboration, Ark will utilise the Marketing Authorization Holder (MAH) scheme to accelerate drug development. WuXi STA will also provide an integrated solution in-process R&D and manufacturing.

The desired improvements to Ark’s drug development process from partnering with WuXi are to significantly reduce commercial production costs, mitigate business risk, and improve operational efficiency.

Ark Biosciences’ pipeline includes active discovery programmes of its own, those of its partners, as well as in-licensed drug assets for clinical development. The company also entered into a licence agreement with Roche in August 2018, for the global rights of a potential new standard-of-care treatment for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

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Dr Jim Wu, CEO of Ark Biosciences, said: “WuXi STA’s enabling end-to-end CMC platform, scale, and innovation capabilities will help us to move our drug candidates from the clinical-stage to commercialisation more efficiently.”